Advocacy & Policy

NAEA Position Statement on Positive School Culture and Climate

[Adopted March 2016; Reviewed and Revised March 2019]

NAEA believes there is a symbiotic relationship between a supported high-quality visual arts education program and a positive school culture and climate. The fundamental context for a school-based visual arts education program requires effective educators who are certified/licensed in visual art and appropriate, equitable, program-specific resources including facilities, budgets, time, instructional materials, and online access. Honoring students’ scheduled access to visual arts instruction is essential to a dynamic learning culture and a positive school climate. Visual art educators play important leadership roles in building positive school culture and climate.

Visual arts education impacts school culture and climate by:

  • increasing student attendance and student engagement
  • promoting personal expression and social-emotional learning thereby enhancing an understanding of cultural diversity, and nurturing mutual respect
  • promoting innovation, collaboration, and creative problem-solving skills applicable to life-long learning
  • advocating for and supporting school and community relationships
  • facilitating interdisciplinary learning through an inclusive, supportive environment where students develop abilities to problem solve, take risks, develop a personal creative voice, collaborate, and reflect
  • building a sense of community within the school.

A positive school culture and climate supports visual arts education by:

  • fostering a creative atmosphere within the school
  • supporting creativity and innovation in teaching and learning
  • showcasing student achievement in the visual arts
  • encouraging diverse connections among people, subject areas, and ideas
  • respecting visual art educators as both teachers and artists
  • providing access to discipline-specific professional learning opportunities
  • valuing visual art educators as leaders in their discipline, schools and communities


NAEA Position Statements:

  • 21st Century Skills and Visual Arts Education
  • Certified/Licensed Visual Art Educators in Pre-K through 12 School Settings
  • Professional Development
  • Scheduling, Time, Funding and/or Resources for Visual Arts Education
  • Visual Arts as a Core Academic Subject

NAEA Publication:

  • Purposes, Principles and Standards for School Art Programs (2014)

Explore More